Thursday, September 30, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
With the internet landscape continually changing, one would assume that there must be a more efficient manner for businesses to build an email list of potential customers.
One of the most noticeable changes taking the internet by storm in the recent past has been the growing popularity of online social networking sites. The internet community has flock to these sites in droves and this trend shows little signs of slowing down. The result has been more effort invested into tapping the potential of these sites for business purposes.
One of the top social networking sites online today namely Twitter has become a popular a target for online entrepreneurs. Due to its huge base of users, this site is prime internet real estate for marketers. The question here concerns the most effective way to harness the traffic off this site, channel it into your business funnel, and build an email list of people who have an interest in what you promote?
Here is a simple 4-step strategy that has proven to be effective for siphoning traffic from Twitter for online business purposes
Open an Account
This seems simple and it is but there are just a few things you will want to pay attention to as you register for your account.
Use either your name or business name as your user ID. This will lend more legitimacy to you in the eyes of other users. Many people use clearly falsified identities, which tend to repel other users. If someone were 'hiding' behind a false identity, would you trust them?
The other thing you want to do is to have a picture of you or at least an avatar of some sort that represents your business.
Search the User Base
Twitter has a very simple method for searching their site based upon 'people' search or keyword searches. Using keywords that are relevant to your business do a search and then follow the people and/or businesses that come up in the results. Also, follow some of their 'friends' so that you are now 'intermingling' with people who share your 'business' interests.
Share Useful Information
After a short period of time you will develop a list of your own followers. First off, remember Twitter is a 'social' site therefore most people are NOT there to be sold. You need to first develop a relationship with them much like you would do in any email based marketing campaign. Once you have done that you will be in a better position to promote to them.
Locate information or resources that would be of interest to the people who are following you and then post it or at least links to it on your own blog. At this point, you can now direct your followers over to your site to view this information.
Place an Opt In Box on Your Blog
Now that you have followers visiting your blog for the information you are sending to them you can create and place sign up form on it offering a free giveaway. You are now on your way to developing a sizable email list of people you have attracted from Twitter who share an interest in what it is you do.
As marketing on the internet continues to change, some things remain the same. An email based marketing campaign continues to prove effective at accelerating the growth of any online business. One significant change however is the growth of online social networking sites. Their growing popularity has created huge population bases, which present tremendous business potential for online entrepreneurs. It is now a matter of learning how to siphon traffic away from these sites and onto your email list. As mentioned Twitter is one of the top social networking sites which presents enormous marketing potential due to the size of its user base. By following the simple 4 step strategy reviewed above you should be able to divert plenty of traffic from this site and onto your email list. At that point, you can commence an email marketing campaign that should help boost your sales and grow your business.
| About The Author |
TJ Philpott is an author and Internet entrepreneur based out of North Carolina.
To learn more about Marketing on the Internet and to also receive a free instructional manual that teaches valuable niche research techniques simply visit:http://blogbrawn.com/
Monday, September 27, 2010
Cheryl is also an author and her new book, LITTLE SHEPPERD has just recently been released. Adding to the fun will be Virginia Grenier's take on writing and some of the new additions to the show will be a weekly event called My Family Does Crazy, by Freda Roberts. This segment will be funnier than you can imagine. We will also have a new movie review segment by Marsha Cook who will review the new movie WALLSTREET by Oliver Stone.
Join in the fun either by phone or online ...call in number is (646) 595-4478 We will also be discussing where BESSE THE BUS is off to and where she's been.
link to show
by J. Aday Kennedy, Illustrated by Jack Foster
13: 978-1-61633-051-4 Klutzy Kantor Print
Friday, September 24, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
I put these three together because in reality everyone has their own idea on how to market themselves on the internet. I personally use all three ways to market my work and myself. I know others who use only one form to promote themselves. Whichever you choose, make sure you keep it updated with the most current information about you.
Another thing to think about is what you are going to post on your websites, blogs, or in your newsletters. Jan Fields, an instructor at the Institute of Children’s Literature, Editor of Children’s Writers enews said in the February 14, 2008 issue, “We live in the information age and little things can become big things really fast. For example, although it is true that editors and agents are not cruising the net looking for your super writing on your website or blog, it's also true that editors and agents spend a lot of time on the Internet. In addition, they have friends who spend a lot of time on the Internet. And they have clients who spend a lot of time on the Internet. So, if I post something on my blog or on a writer's discussion board saying ‘Nathan Bransford rejected me so he's a doodiehead.’ He may never see it - but there's a decent chance an internet search for his name could turn up the unfortunate doodiehead remark. And maybe he'll laugh and shake his head, and maybe he'll think, ‘Why the heck is this woman calling me a doodiehead?’ And maybe he'll even take the extra moment to think, ‘I don't like her - what's her name anyway?’ And maybe some other agent friends of his will take up his offense and well . . . my professional life would be about to take a hit.”
With that said, let us talk about blogs. I have a few different blogs. Most of us already know about My Space, Blogger, Facebook, and Squidoo. Whichever blog site you choose, make sure to have a topic for your blog. If it’s about you as a writer, then stick to that theme as much as possible. If you choose to have a blog about your new book or how to write in your genre, great!
Blogs drive lots of traffic, if you are blogging about something people will want to share with others, add to their blog roll, and so on. My blogs are either about writing for children, Stories for Children Magazine, or myself as a writer and my thoughts on writing. I share information on each blog that crosses easily over, but mostly only blog about stuff that relates to those themes. For example, I am not going to post a media release on my The Writing Mama blog about the new staff members at SFC. Nor would I blog about reading tips on one of the blogs I’m doing a guest post on, but I would on my personal writing blog and on my SFC blog because they are both geared towards parents.
Let’s talk Websites for a minute. I know many writers think they have to be computer savvy or know HTML (computer lingo) to build a website. Some think you have to invest lots of money into a website. Well I’m here to tell you those people are wrong. First off, I have three websites. One is my personal website (http://vsgrenier.com), the second is Stories for Children Publishing, LLC (http://storiesforchildrenpublishing.com) and the third is my Ezine, Stories for Children Magazine (http://storiesforchildrenmagazine.org). All of these sites I built myself and I had absolutely no website training or coaching help. I learned as I went. I used many websites that I enjoy visiting as my outline. But first, let’s talk about why it’s important to have a web presence.
As an author, it is important to have a web presence because most of the world is on the internet daily. We all use computers at work, home, and even in schools. With a website, your readers, editors, publisher and anyone else who wants to learn more about you can.
On my personal website, I have a Bio page where I not only tell about me in third person, I also have a first person letter to those who come to visit. I list my hobbies and other websites, too. The next page I have is “What’s New”. Here I list anything going on in my writing career be it an interview or coming soon published title. After this is my “Event Calendar”. Not everyone has this on their site, but I find it nice to have. This let’s my readers know where I’ll be or when I’ll be interviewed next. I even list workshops I’m presenting at school visits or conferences.
Every website should have a “Media Room”. This page lists your media releases, your bio, awards, publications, appearances, copies or links to interviews, personal essay, available seminar list, your expert list, book reviews or reviews about you as a speaker, a picture of you, covers of your books, and sales sheet. You should have contact information so those who want a full media kit can request one. Note: You will want to make sure people who come to visit can download and print this information as well.
After those key parts of your site, anything goes. On my site, I list my critique services, information about Stories for Children Magazine, my free newsletter for writers (SFC Newsletter for Writers), information for school visits, and I even have a resource pages for kids, teachers, and parents.
A few comments about pictures on blogs and websites: when adding pictures to your sites make sure they are professionally done or look like it. Add pictures from workshops, conferences, and other writing activities, too. It’s okay to have a few pictures of your family, pets, and even like me the inspirational view out my front windows, but just remember your fans want to know you’re out there writing, getting published, visiting schools if you’re a children’s writer and doing workshops.
Lastly, the key to a website is repeat traffic. Many authors offer free articles about writing; some printable coloring pages. Myself, and others, offer a free newsletter or eBooks. Just make sure that you are able to update this information and change it out often. I typically update my site at least once a month if not more.
Here are few other author websites I think are really good:
Now to answer the question you’ve been thinking, “How can I have a website and not pay a lot of money.” I use OfficeLive.com for my sites. You can also use Tripod.com who I have used in the past and they are okay. I originally had Stories for Children Magazine’s site hosted with them, but you do have to pay a little every month if you want to keep pop ups off your site. Which I did at $4.95 a month. However, OfficLive.com doesn’t have pop ups and you only pay yearly ($14.95) to have a site.
A few others that I don’t know much about . . . but are free: Homestead.com, Freewebsites.com, and Bravenet.com.
I’m sure there are more, but my advice is, ask other writers you know who have a website. Ask them who they use and what they like and don’t like about the hosting site.
Again, you don’t need to be a computer nerd to build a site. Most hosting sites offer builders and templates and there are many online places to get free templates, html code, and much more. Just ask your writing friends or if there is a site you like, contact them and ask how they did whatever it is you like. You’d be surprised to find most of the time they got it from some other place on the web, and now you can go and customize it for your site from there, too.
So why is a website or blog important? Because it lets editors and publishers know you have a way to promote and market what you write and it lets readers get to know you. In sales it is said, “People buy people before they buy merchandise.”
I don’t know about you, but when I’m looking for a new book to read, I look at the author’s name first than the title. I usually buy a book from an author I know before I buy one from one I don’t. In addition, if I do buy a book from an author I don’t know . . . I look them up on the internet to find out more about them.
Just recently in one of my writing groups, the moderator, Tilly Rivers, had this to share with us. “A hard-driving author is always at the heart of success. Some authors spend months at a time on the road doing book readings or seminars, others are relentless at marketing themselves as interview candidates for radio stations, print and Internet media, even TV. Successful authors maintain databases and mailing lists of fans, local media, and book editors of national papers, and networking links to announce every new book release or public appearance.
The mistake most authors make is they forget to promote themselves as an author before they can promote their book. Remember that the least book buying habit for a reader is--who the publisher is- they do not care, and for the most part do not know a self-publisher from a trade publisher. The top book buying habit is going into the store, looking for an author. (Author- not title!)”
Now once you build a website and/or blog, make sure to have a link in your signature line when sending an email and also link with others who share the same passion, genre, or cover the same topics. People love to see others like your site as well and it helps move you up in the rankings of search engines the more links you have.
To learn more or if you would like to join Tilly Rivers yahoo group about marketing and promotion go here http://groups.yahoo.com/group/promoteyourwriting/, trust me it’s well worth it.
Lastly, let’s just quickly talk about newsletters. I know most of you are thinking, “How can I write a newsletter?” Well I personally thought the same thing when I first attended the Muse Online Writer’s Conference three years ago and took Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s workshop “Savvy Marketing”.
In her workshop, I learned some tips I didn’t know about because they were things I didn’t need to do in fashion. Nevertheless, as a writer, they were very valuable tips to get my name out. One was starting a newsletter.
So think of your newsletter the same way. Yes, for a new writer the idea might be scary. Think of a different way to get more names in your contact file. How about running a contest on your blog where everyone has to give up at least their email address. At Stories for Children Magazine, we use a guest book. Another great way to get contacts added to your database.
However, I find my SFC Newsletter for Writers (which is free and you can find more about it at http://storiesforchildrenpublishing.com) is the best way to add contacts to my mailing list. I use this list to not only send out my newsletter, but to let my fans know about upcoming events I’m doing, new works being published, and anything I feel is important to those in writing. Now with that said, I don’t just go around spamming people either. I make sure I send things when it is important and I do it as a media release or professional letter. Be savvy and professional about how you share your news with those on your mailing list. You don’t want to lose them. These readers are your fans. Treat them with respect and professionalism. In addition, you never know . . . they may just nominate you for the 101 Best Newsletters from Writer’s Digest as my subscribers did in 2009. It was such an honor to be listed with all the others last year.
So how do you get started writing a newsletter? My newsletter is for children’s writers mostly, but all those who love writing can gain insight from my newsletter. I was new to writing when I started it and I wrote most of the articles for the first few months. How I started my fan base was by contacting those I already knew to see if anyone was interested in receiving SFC Newsletter for Writers. I posted to my writing groups and blogs with how to subscribe and in the first month, I had 50 subscribers. Not a lot, but a good start. Slowly, others contacted me about subscribing and submitting. Now I only write one column each month and have five other writers who write for the newsletter as well. I now have a decent fan base of over 800. It has become a great way for me to build peer support, fans, and find talented authors or illustrators to submit to Stores for Children Magazine as well.
My name as an editor has spread because of my newsletter and magazine. People in the industry know me from either SFC Newsletter for Writers or Stories for Children Magazine, I have found when I do submit as a freelance children’s writer . . . I tend to make contact with the editors instead of the slush pile. I may not sell everything I submit, but I do sell and I make valuable contacts at publishing houses.
So think about starting a newsletter. Mine is monthly, you can do yours weekly, bi-monthly, or quarterly. Your newsletter can be about writing, reading tips for kids, how to better your relationships with your partner (if you’re a romance writer), etc. Whatever genre you are writing in, make sure your newsletter fits with it or can somehow be tied to it.
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Choosing an online marketing strategy involves a lot of factors some of which are personal and others that are economical. Ultimately, however you want to choose the one that is the most effective for your particular circumstances when marketing on the internet. Today our discussion focuses on comparing the benefits between publishing content and/or using pay per click ads as a means to promote online. Below let's examine the benefits of these 2 promotional strategies and their marketing effectiveness online. 1) PPC: Targeted The traffic pay per click ads generate is highly targeted since the only people responding are those who are answering a specific ad you have posted. Quick Response An Adwords campaign solicits customer reactions that are nearly instantaneous from the time they view the ad. A typical campaign can be controlled to run at a specified time and even for a pre-determined amount of time. Any responses the ads may draw are therefore going to be within these time constraints. Measurable With the ability to assign both time and cost to your ads it is easy to measure your rate of return on investment and what is the best time to advertize. Costs Money Yes as we have already mentioned pay per click ads do cost money. For many this investment is well worth it due to the predictability of the type of traffic it attracts and how fast it can do so. 2) Publishing Content: Economical Publishing content is free of charge except for the time and effort you may invest. In this respect, it is a very attractive alternative to ppc. Longer Lasting Content published online can be in circulation and generating you traffic for quite some time. The better your content the more likely it will circulate longer. Not bad for a one time up-front effort on your part. Builds Credibility/Reputation As your content circulates the greater the association with you it makes on readers. If what you publish is of value or use to readers your reputation will end up benefiting. As the frequency of your publications increases so will your credibility since readers will begin to view you as an authority figure on the subject or in the field. Targeted Similar to ppc circulating information about on the internet will attract readers only interested in what you are writing about. Assuming what you write about is also what you may be promoting the traffic you receive will be targeted. When choosing an online marketing strategy it is best to select according to your skill set, budget and both short and long-term business intentions. Our comparison of pay per click ads and publishing content above serve only to give you a better understanding of their relative marketing effectiveness. In the end, the choice is yours as to which method may work best for you when marketing on the internet. And by the way, there is nothing wrong with using a combination of both of these strategies either!
About The Author
TJ Philpott is an author and Internet entrepreneur based out of North Carolina. For more tips about choosing an Online Marketing Strategy and to receive a free instructional manual that teaches valuable niche research techniques visit:http://affiliatequickstart.com
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